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April 7, 2011
It appears as though on May 1, 2011, the current Pope will recognize the former Pope's entrance into heaven. This entrance, combined with current Pope's declaration that this person may now intercede on behalf of a believer who prays to him amounts to what the Catholic Church calls Beatification. It is what the Catholic church describes as the third of four steps in becoming a saint. How sad. These poor followers of the various Pope's believe they must go through all these man-made hurdles to achieve sainthood. How sad it is that these deceived masses believe their hope is in praying to someone who is already dead. Where to begin? First, I am thankful that I do not have to wait until some time after my death for another man to decide whether or not I qualify to be a saint. First, if we are to believe Paul, the true saints of God are among the living. Consider:
Romans 15:25 But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.
If we are to believe Saint Paul, he was going to Jerusalem to minister unto the saints. Why would he waste time ministering to the dead? He would not. So, we see the saints are living. So, who are the saints? Again, if we trust Saint Paul, we can see a trend...
1 Corinthians 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:
In 1 Cor 1:2, Paul is writing to the saints which are in the church of Corinth. So, we should assume that the saints are church members. There are many other examples of this trend. Saints are nothing more than saved church members. So, guess what, I am officially a saint! More importantly, my sainthood is not determined by someone else. My salvation, and therefore my sainthood, were purchased by Jesus Christ on the Cross of Calvary when my sin debt was paid. That purchase became a free gift which I could choose to accept through my own free will. There was nothing I had to do to earn my salvation and there is nothing I need do to obtain sainthood. I really pity the followers of the Catholic church. As a saint of God, I do not need to await beatification to enter into heaven. It is not up to the Pope to determine my eternal destiny. I am saved therefore, I am destined to spend eternity at the feet of Christ. However, there is another aspect of beatification: intercession. According to the Catholic church, one who has been beatified may accept prayers and intercede on behalf of those on earth. Like much of the Catholic doctrine, this is in direct contradiction to the Word of God. While we are all to intercede for each other in prayer, we should not pray to each other. Prayer is an offering and a sacrifice which must only be offered to God. Moreover, prayers to the dead have, traditionally, only been made by the pagans who worship their dead. If you look at the foot of Peter in the Basilicia of St. Peter, you will see his toes have been worn and polished by years of worshipers who touched or kissed his foot. You draw your own conclusion: are they worshiping Peter? There are certainly many who pray to him. I am certainly a saint (as I am saved by the grace of God), but I would never allow you to pray to me. Worse than intercession, the idea of mediation comes in to play with those who have been beatified or anointed as saints by the Catholic church. It is claimed by some that a saint can petition on your behalf and can even argue our case, so to speak, before God on our behalf.
1 Timothy 2:5-6 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; (6) Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
There is only one mediator: Jesus Christ. To claim that anyone else can be a mediator between you (or I) and God is nothing more than idolatry.